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Poni-class Heavy Shuttle

Developed by the Shield Polity in 1204 to provide heavy orbital transfer capability using the basic TL8 and emerging TL9 technologies at the new starports opening within the polity. Its purpose was to provide a small shuttle capable of lifting 100 displacement tons into orbit, and maneuvering to a space station, whilst allowing a rapid turn around on par with the relic HEPlaR powered shuttles.

The rapid turn around provision prevented the use of solid fuel boosters. Conventional turbofans are used to provide motive power to raise the shuttle to its orbital insertion point (90%) whilst the new contra-grav system neutralized the crafts weight. At the high orbital insertion point, the shuttle’s fusion rocket could be safely ignited to boost the shuttle out of the upper reaches of the atmosphere and into orbit. The design’s flexibility allowed a significant fuel allowance to be carried to allow considerable orbital maneuvering, and even transit to nearby moons and planets. A small allowance has been provided in the fuel supply for the turbofans to allow atmospheric maneuvering.

Small staterooms are provided for all 4 crew, and an extra flight workstation and small stateroom have been provided to reduce the work burden on the crew for longer voyages.

The fuel supply allows both powered ascent and descent. The turbofans burn for 151.2 minutes for ascent and descent leaving 16.8 minutes spare capacity. The fusion rocket requires 16.8 minutes burn (0.14G) for orbital insertion and de-orbit burn, the remainder can be used for orbital maneuvering. The following burn times are for a type A planet, smaller worlds will provide a greater fuel reserve.

Displacement: 200 tons Hull Armor: 10
Length: 17m Volume: 2,800 cu. m.
Price: MCr 105.052 Target Size: S
Configuration: Sphere SL Tech Level: 8
Mass (Loaded/Empty): 2,883.48/1,343.48

Engineering Data

Power Plant
45MW Fission , Duration 1 year
Maneuver Gs
0.5G on turbofans producing 1000tns thrust, 0.5G on fusion rocket producing 1000tns thrust, contra-gravity
G Hours
1.4 for turbofans, 13.14 for fusion rocket


2 x TL9 std
Radio 30,000km; Maser com, 3,000km
TL8 avionics and navigation aids
Radar, 300km




Extended life support

4 (1 engineering, 2 manoeuvring, 1 elec)
4 bridge, 1 normal, TL9 controls
Crew Accommodations
5 small staterooms
1540 cubic metres
Small craft
4 large cargo hatches


No fuel scoops or plant. Fuel: 4.5kl radioactive, 131.4kl liquid hydrogen, 240kl hydrocarbon distillates.

With no engines firing the shuttle has a power shortfall of approximately 20MW, this is normally dealt with by turning off the contra-grav system. During orbital transfer, the shuttle has a power surplus of 0.566MW. In orbital flight with the fusion rocket operating the shuttle has a power surplus of 60.566MW.

Atmospheric speed
Top = 1100kph, Cruise = 825kph, NOE = 40kph
Combat Move
High 153, Low 6
Travel Move
High 3300, NOE 240

System Damage Table

MCom: 1h (x3) Radio: 1h 2SSR: 1h Radar: 1H
LS: 1H ELS: 1H PP: 3H CG: 1H
FusRckt: 1H Turbofans: 3H Cargo: 1H  

Damage Location Table

Location Surface Internal
1 1-9: Antenna 1-12: Elec; 13-18: Qtrs; 19-20: Hold
2-3   1-10: Qtrs; 11-20: Hold
4-5   Hold
6-7   Hold
8-9 1-18: CargoHatch; 19: AL Hold
10-11 1-10: CG 1-7: Eng; 8-20: Hold
12-13   Hold
14-15 1-10: CG Hold
16-17   Hold
18-19   Eng
20 1-6: Exhaust Eng